Carnegie Mellon University


Carnegie Mellon University is a highly prestigious, private research institution located in the Oakland neighborhood of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.  Founded in 1900 by steel tycoon Andrew Carnegie as Carnegie Tech, the school merged with the Mellon Institute in 1967. CMU’s 148-acre campus is home to an undergraduate enrollment of approximately 6,100 students. The city of Pittsburgh is no longer known as just a steel town, emerging as an internationally recognized center for research and industry, world-class medical facilities, culture and its successful professional sports teams. In recent years there has been an influx of new bars, restaurants and hotels, and a revitalization of downtown Pittsburgh, attracting millennials, artist and chefs. The University of Pittsburgh is one of the oldest institutions of higher education in the United States, founded in 1787, and a respected state-related research university. The school is located in the city's Oakland neighborhood, just 3-miles from downtown Pittsburgh. The 132-acre Pittsburgh campus is home to a large population just under 20,000 undergraduates. The city itself has experienced a renaissance in the last few years, attracting artists, chefs, and young millennials, and an influx of new restaurants, bars, and boutique hotels—all while still retaining its Rust Belt roots. There are city bus stops right on campus, and students can ride public transportation into the city for free with a school ID.


Stay: Marriott |  Breakfast: Pamela's Diner

Lunch: Primanti Bros.  | Dinner: Whitfield

Visitor Information: CMU offers campus tours on weekdays as well as weekends from mid-February through mid-November, except during university holidays, semester breaks and finals testing. Please note that weekend tours do tend to be much larger than than weekday tours. Register here!

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Transportation: Pittsburgh International Airport is serviced by 14 airlines and offers nonstop service to 68 U.S. cities. The airport is an approximate 45-minute drive to campus.  Uber, Lyft and taxi services are available at the airport. The 28X Airport Flyer Bus, sponsored by the Port Authority Transit, is one of the more popular and affordable options for visitors--with stops in the heart of the Carnegie Mellon campus. (Typically the ride takes 40 minutes from the airport.) The trip is free for Carnegie Mellon students and costs $2.75 for other passengers. The Greyhound Trailways Bus Terminal is located five miles from campus in downtown Pittsburgh. The Amtrak Train Station is located at 1100 Liberty Avenue in downtown Pittsburgh and just four miles from campus. 

Stay: The hotels closest to the CMU campus are in Shadyside, East End and Oakland, all within two miles or less from campus. In Oakland top choices include the Hampton Inn Pittsburgh-University Center, Hilton Garden Inn - Pittsburgh University Place, Hotel Indigo Pittsburgh - Technology Center, Residence Inn by Marriott and the Wyndham Pittsburgh - University Center. In Shadyside families like to stay at Courtyard by Marriott Shadyside/Oakland, Hyatt House Pittsburgh/Bloomfield/Shadyside, SpringHill Suites Bakery Square or the ShadySide Inn All Suites Hotel. Many of the above hotels offer discounted rates to university visitors and a free shuttle service to campus. If you prefer boutique hotels, check into the Ace Hotel, in the recently hip East Liberty area of Pittsburgh. The Ace, housed in a former YMCA serves Stumptown Coffee in its lobby coffee bar and breakfast at it's in-house restaurant the Whitfield, one of the city’s hottest tables. Giving the Ace some healthy competition, the new Kimpton Hotel Monaco housed in the iconic Beaux-Arts James H. Reed building also has its owns in-house attractions such as The Commoner, an English style , and an open-air rooftop Biergarten. Downtown, many families like to stay at the Fairmont Pittsburgh in the PNC Plaza or the Wyndham Grand Pittsburgh Downtown.

Pittsburgh Fun Facts: Did you know there are over 440 bridges in Pittsburgh, a large number for a city of just over 300,000 people, hence it’s nickname “City of Bridges.” Pittsburgh is also often referred to as “The Steel City”, dating back to when the city was the steel making capital of the world, though the industry collapsed in the 80’s the common nickname still remains.

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Campus News: This fall begins a new chapter in CMU’s history with the opening in of a new section of campus, the David A. Tepper Quadrangle. Tepper Quad will be the new home for the Tepper School of Business, the Swartz Center for Entrepreneurship, a fitness center, a new dining commons, and the Coulter Welcome Center. 

Coffee: Before the tour head to Au Bon Pain, on campus in the Cohon Center. A homegrown Pittsburgh institution known for its artisan coffee, Tazza D'Oro is located in the new Rohr commons on Tepper Quad. Off campus, start your day at popular Crazy Mocha, a favorite of students and locals with numerous locations throughout the city. The Oakland Ave. spot is easy to get to when on campus, and is always busy with students on their laptops thanks to free WIFI and numerous outlets. Other popular spots include Redhawk Coffee and Commonplace Coffee, a mini-chain with six locations throughout the city. (The Julius Street location is not far from campus.)

Breakfast: Pamela’s Diner is a must, a beloved Pittsburgh staple famous for crepe-style pancakes-- so good covered with fruit and whipped cream!

Lunch: Carnegie Mellon's dining program is globally inspired and locally sourced with food that is eclectic, tasty and healthy. In the mood for Indian, Pan-Asian, Mexican, or Mediterranean, head to the Cohon University Center also home to the Schatz dining hall. In the new Rohr Commons, Pure has options that include build your own sandwiches made with house-roasted meats, specialty burgers, brick oven pizza and organic salads. To experience a Pittsburgh institution a must is Primanti Brothers, a counter service sandwich chain that dates back to the 30’s, famous for their French fry-stuffed creations. One alumnus said she still dreams of late night visits for a roast beef and cheddar, stacked with fresh-cut fries, coleslaw, and tomatoes. Another college tradition, if your game, is to get a hot dog at the “O”, The Original Hot Dog Shop, an Oakland neighborhood fixture for over 52 years. Other student haunts include tacos at Las Palmas, pub food at Fuel and Fuddle, burgers at Stack’d, pizza at Sorrento’s, Malaysian and Thai fare at Spice Island Tea House and sushi at Oishii Bento. Located in Schenley Plaza, enjoy sandwiches, salads, and pizzas all made from fresh local ingredients at The Porch at Schenley. (There’s a popular walk-up window for quick breakfast fare.) For a unique Pittsburgh dining experience in the Strip District check out the Smallman Gallery, a 6,000 square foot food hall and a launch pad for new restaurant concepts with four innovative restaurants, a full bar, plus a coffee & espresso bar. It’s been so successful they just opened another one called Federal Gallery. The Vandal in nearby Lawrenceville is an elevated all day order at the counter café, we hear its well worth the wait for the fried chicken sandwich or the cheeseburger.  



Casual:  Students debate who has better pizza: Aiello's Pizza or Mineo's Pizza House, but Driftwood Oven, in the Lawrenceville neighborhood is the newest contender for top pies. Open Wednesday through Sunday, it has attracted a loyal following that will surely grow after being named to Bon Appetit’s best new restaurants 2018 list. Enjoy soup, sushi, salads, and seafood-focused dishes at the Penn Cove Eatery. Another popular seafood spot is the Merchant Oyster Co. an oyster bar and chowder house, the lobster rolls and crab cakes are a house specialty. Other popular student eateries, include Oishii Bento, Everyday NoodlesStack’d, Mad Mex,  Urban Tap and Smoke BBQ Taqueria for delicious tacos. 


A Step Up:  As we mentioned above the Whitfield in the Ace is a great dinner choice, and also extremely popular for brunch, known for its locally sourced beef and in-house butchery, there is also a full vegetarian tasting menu. In Pittsburgh’s Lawrenceville neighborhood, Cure serves Mediterranean-inspired plates. Spanish stunner, Morcilla, from the same team as Cure, is one of Pittsburgh’s hot spots for pincho style small plates and larger platters meant for sharing.  Tiny Legume’s daily menu is posted online every day at 5:00 p.m., known as one of the city’s best for upscale eats. Or The Whale, located in a soaring bi-level space downtown (once a former Salvation Army building part of the Distrikt Hotel) serves French Inspired seafood-centric fare, much of which is cooked over a wood-fired grill. Superior Motors, located in an old Chevy dealership, was just named one of the ten best new restaurants in the country by Food and Wine Magazine, stating the restaurant has “exceptional food, deep sense of commitment to its community, powerful narration and special voice in the region.” It sounds like it's well worth the drive to nearby Braddock, about a 20-minute ride from the university.

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Sweet Treats: Last year, the Huffington Post declared Pittsburgh’s Burnt Almond Torte to be “probably the BEST cake America has to offer." Prantl's Bakery's cake has been a local icon for 45 years. Do not leave town without bringing some home! Make a stop at the Pittsburgh Popcorn Company with many locations throughout the city and a branch right in Oakland. It’s worth the short drive for a scoop or two at Millie’s Homemade Ice Cream in Shadyside. 

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Student Spotting: The Fence is CMU’s unofficial university billboard, painted between midnight and dawn by students who then must guard their message if they want it to remain. The original Fence was supposedly the "most painted object in the world" until it collapsed, ultimately replaced by a steel-concrete fence.

Local Attractions: The city is home to powerhouse professional sports teams, such as the Steelers and Penguins, and countless worthy cultural institutions, such as the Andy Warhol Museum.  The museum has the largest collection of Warhol’s work in the world, including an impressive collection of his pre-factory early works, personal photos, and you can even try out his signature silk screening technique during your visit.   A short walk from the Warhol is the Senator John Heinz History Center, Pennsylvania's largest history museum, an affiliate of the Smithsonian Institution. Another worthy stop is the nearby August Wilson Center, named for the Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright and Pittsburgh native, is also worth a visit. The center contains performance and gallery spaces. There are four Carnegie Foundation museums in Pittsburgh, art lovers head to the Carnegie Museum of Art while science fans should allow time for a visit to the Carnegie Museum of Natural History.  Founded in 1977, the Mattress Factory is a contemporary art museum and experimental lab featuring site-specific installations created by artists in residence from around the world. Explore the outdoor gardens and Victorian glasshouse at the Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, set in Schenley Park. As Pittsburgh is bordered by three rivers, sailing, kayaking, and fishing opportunities are also plentiful.



— Quotes From Campus —

While CMU has a college feel with a residential campus, the surrounding city and all its perks is just minutes away. Everyone on campus is smart, passionate, and my classes and professors have pushed me to grow in ways I could never have imagined. While my workload is tough, I feel that I am well prepared for a job upon graduation.
— Elle
A diverse and inclusive community is the foundation for excellence in research, creativity, learning and human development, and is, therefore, at the core of our mission as a university.
— President Farnam Jahanian





Scotty Dog

School Colors

Cardinal, Gray, and White

Acceptance Rate


Common Application


Supplement Essays


Early Action/Decision

Early Decision


Average - 1500


Average - 34




Medium - Over 6000 Undergraduates




Admissions Office

5000 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213-3891

(412) 268-2082

Sports Divisions

NCAA Division III

Greek Life


Noteworthy Alumni

Ted Danson
Judith Light


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